Community theater folk use the term “hell week” to describe the last week before a performance opens. It’s busy, and intense, and stressful.
We had a rehearsal last Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t the whole play. Then we had rehearsals every night, Monday through Thursday, lasting generally until 9:30 or 10 at night – and this was during a relatively-busy week for me in my day job. Then we opened Friday night and had a performance Saturday.
The play was well-received, and I think all of us were happy with opening weekend. This has been a great cast to work with – a wide variety of personalities and backgrounds, but we’ve all thrown ourselves into this play and we’ve all gotten along quite well. There’s not a weak link in the chain.
I was a little worried about how some people would take my part – I’m playing a pretty unlikable character, and I use quite a bit of mild profanity. One man from church jokingly told me in the reception line Saturday night that the bishop wanted to see me about revoking my lay speaker certification. But I think people have taken the play for what it is.
This morning, instead of going to First UMC, I went and judged a barbecue cookoff at Fellowship For Christ, a non-denominational church north of town, and then stayed for their service. I did not stick around for the church picnic afterward, though; I went to Walmart, stood in the express lane for what seemed like forever, and then came home. I tried to watch the first episode of “The Roosevelts” but fell asleep through most of it. Later in the day, Vickie Hull from church posted a Facebook photo from Normandy Lake, where First UMC was having its annual Galilean Service and picnic. I had completely forgotten about that – and, of course, I wasn’t in church this morning to be reminded of it.
That’s OK, though. I needed to recuperate today. I did not walk, I did not study my lines, I did not do much of anything once I got home.
Normally, you have one rehearsal, called a “pickup” rehearsal, between the two weekends of a community theater production. We’re going to have two, on Wednesday and Thursday nights, because we love you, the audience, so much. I have a couple of early-evening commitments – a funeral visitation Monday, and a county meeting Tuesday – until then, but I’ll still have tonight and most of the next two evenings to try to catch up on unfinished business.
If you’re in the area, and able to come and see us next weekend, I think you’d really enjoy the play. You can make reservations by calling 931-684-8359 or visiting The Fly Arts Center Monday, Tuesday or Thursday from 11 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.